Yesterday, at the start of the Sharjah International Book Fair, the winners of the 2017 Etisalat Awards for Arabic Children’s Literature were announced in six categories, including one for best app:
There was a strong Young Adult field this year, including books by two-time shortlistee Taghreed Najjar (One Day the Sun Will Shine) and previous winner Sonia Nimr (Thunderbird). The prize went to celebrated children’s book author Fatima Sharafeddine, who was previously shortlisted for Ghady and Rawan and whose Faten has appeared in translation as The Servant.
Sharafeddine won for her novel that tackles domestic violence, Cappuccino. (Read Hend Saeed’s review.)
In the Best Text category, the prize went to My Mother is a Gorilla and My Father is an Elephant by Naseeba Al Ozaibi.
What Happened to My Brother Ramiz?, written by Taghreed Najjar and illustrated by Maya Fidawi, was also shortlisted in the Best Text category, and it won in the Best Production category. It’s part of a new series of chapter books for emerging readers that is absolutely fantastic. You can read more about the other titles at the Salwa website.
Illustrator Maya Fidawi also took the Best Illustrator prize for The Seventh Day’s Sheep, written by Amina Al Hachemi.
The Children’s Book of the Year prize, meanwhile, went to Two Homes Instead of One by Lorca Sbeity, illustrated by Mona Yakzan.
The Best App prize, meanwhile, went to the Lamsa app, which targets users between 2-8 years and was developed by the Lamsa company in the UAE.